Top of the lineup sparking Orioles

Top of the lineup sparking Orioles

BALTIMORE -- The Orioles have hit well all season, and the top of the lineup is a big reason for that success.

Despite Melvin Mora playing in only five games due to hamstring problems, pitchers haven't been able to get the top part of the order out. Brian Roberts (.372), Adam Jones (.348, 17 RBIs), Nick Markakis (.389, 21 RBIs) and cleanup hitter Aubrey Huff (.276, 17 RBIs) have carried the offense.

Roberts, Jones and Markakis set the table for the rest of the lineup. They've combined to score 59 of the team's 105 runs so far -- making up for some inconsistent pitching in the first weeks.

Jones and Markakis have been solid from Opening Day, but Roberts keeps getting better. After signing a new contract, the leadoff hitter is off to one of the best starts in his career.

He's already drawn 10 walks with three steals and has a .443 on-base percentage. Roberts had three singles and a homer in Sunday's 8-5 victory over the Rangers.

"He's a little guy, but he plays like a big guy," said Orioles manager Dave Trembley. "He plays with his heart, that's what he does. He plays with his heart all the time."

Pitching matchup
BAL: RHP Jeremy Guthrie (2-1, 5.16 ERA)
Guthrie has completed six innings in three of his four starts this season, and only one other Oriole has even done it once. The right-hander got knocked around against the White Sox in his last outing and surrendered a seven-run lead against Boston in his start before that. Opposing hitters have batted .301 off Guthrie so far after registering marks under .250 in each of the past two years.

TEX: LHP Matt Harrison (0-2, 9.20 ERA)
Harrison did not fare well against the Blue Jays in his last start. The left-hander surrendered five runs on nine hits over four innings. He walked two, struck out one and allowed two home runs in the outing. Over his three starts this year, opponents are hitting .400. He's allowed 26 hits and 15 runs across 14 2/3 innings.

Markakis extended his hitting streak to 13 in Sunday's game, but he's also reached base in 27 straight games dating back to last season -- a Major League high. ... Two Orioles were thrown out on the bases in Sunday's win. Rangers left fielder David Murphy threw out Jones at third and later easily got Luke Scott at home. ... The Orioles went 4-for-9 with runners in scoring position Sunday. ... 3B Melvin Mora will play in a Minor League rehab game with Triple-A Norfolk on Tuesday night.

 Buy tickets now to catch the game in person.

On the Internet
 Gameday Audio
•  Gameday
•  Official game notes

On television
• MASN 2

On radio
• 105.7 The Fan

Up next
• Tuesday: Orioles (Adam Eaton, 1-2, 7.04) vs. Angels (Joe Saunders, 2-1, 3.51), 7:05 p.m. ET
• Wednesday: Orioles (Koji Uehara, 2-1, 4.56) vs. Angels (Matt Palmer, 1-0, 6.00), 12:35 p.m. ET
• Thursday: Off-day

Jeff Seidel is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.